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Page last updated at 10:40 GMT, Wednesday, 12 May 2010 11:40 UK

Justin Marshall calls time on playing career

Saracens scrum-half Justin Marshall
Marshall stopped playing for the All Blacks in 2005

Saracens scrum-half Justin Marshall has announced his retirement.

The 36-year-old former All Black could make his final appearance for Saracens in Sunday's Premiership semi-final against Northampton.

Marshall won 81 caps for his country and is the third most capped New Zealand international.

"I have given a lot to the game over the past 17 seasons, but rugby has given me much, much more," said Marshall, who scored 24 Test tries.

"When I was 19, I was in danger of going off the rails, but I was given a chance to move to Christchurch and play for Canterbury.

"Later that year, I was picked for the All Blacks and this incredible journey began. I have been so fortunate to make so many friends in this game all around the world.

"It has never been dull, and I have to thank my wife Nicolle and my children for supporting me during this period.

606: DEBATE

"My career has made massive demands on them, and now we are all looking forward to going home to New Zealand and settling into something like a normal family life.

"I just feel immensely grateful to all the talented players and coaches who have made my career so enjoyable and memorable."

Marshall, who played in the 1999 and 2003 World Cups, played 60 times for Canterbury and 105 times for the Crusaders.

He helped the Crusaders win the Super 12 championship - now the Super 14 - on four occasions before he headed to Europe in 2005.

Marshall played for Leeds, the Ospreys and French side Montpellier before joining Saracens in January 2009.

He will become a television rugby pundit back in New Zealand while Saracens say he will continue to work for the club.



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see also
Marshall agrees new Sarries deal
24 Apr 09 |  Saracens
Marshall makes move to Saracens
15 Jan 09 |  Saracens
Marshall suspended by Montpellier
09 Jan 09 |  Rugby Union
Marshall makes Montpellier move
16 Jul 08 |  Ospreys
Money did not end move - Marshall
11 May 08 |  Ospreys
Marshall considers coaching plan
02 Apr 08 |  Ospreys


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